tv Public Affairs CSPAN August 7, 2013 5:00pm-8:01pm EDT
the new administration in yemen wants to demonstrate that they are not the same as the prior administration. they have taken actions, like we are seeing today, where they are trying to put their own security forces out front. we are also seeing, for >> they have accepted training and continue to allow us to conduct drone operations. all of those are signs that things are improving. the recent visit by the u.s. in part was to deliver the message that we need to see stepped-up operations in light of the intelligence we're receiving. host: the "washington post" reporting there have been four drone attacks over the last 10 days. and in comparison, seven months have passed with no drone attacks. guest: right, that shows you right there that, two things, they're trying to show seriousness. two, the drones also have been
reported as flying at low levels around the urban areas to demonstrate a show of force. that's politically difficult for the host government because, as you know, the drone strikes have created some domestic tension. so in terms of being able to demonstrate to the u.s. that they are serious, those are steps that are confidence building measures. -- ted jada cople has coppel has written, america's chronic overreaction to terrorism, we had excerpts. but the country's capacity for self-inflicted damage must astounded even osama bin laden. there is always the nightmare of acquiring, terrorists acquiring weapons of mass destruction, but nothing would give the terrorists enemies greater satisfaction than that we focus obsessively on the remote possibility and restrict our lives and our liberties
accordingly. guest: this is always a difficult debate. i think that if we step back d look at it since 9/11, the united states, even though we're one of the most open and free countries has remained, frankly, open and free. we have continued to have super bowls. we continue to have our people travel abroad. we have robust trade with our allies around the world. so this type of limited action, i would use an analogy of it's like a hurricane. we have some weather forecasting that says will is going to be a potential storm. we're battening down the hatches in a few limiting places. if the storm passes, great, but this administration is leaning forward in a way that i think is professionally responsible and they're being advised by not just their political advisors, but also by the c.i.a., one of the old agencies, this is an example of a limited response.
it's broader than many other actions we have taken, but to be honest, it's temporary and we'll see here it becomes perpetual, koppel has a point. if it's a short term battening down the hatches before a activity hurricane, that's the proper action. host: chad worked on wall street from goldman sachs and morgan stanley. i want to go back to the issue of the chatter that we have these references to. some had indicated including a senator from georgia on sunday's "meet the press," it was reminiscent of the chatter pre9/11. a lot has changed from then to today. can you explain? guest: a couple of things have changed. one is, what is similar that we have been receiving a number of indications, a number of signs and part of the intelligence
world is you never get perfect information. you're looking for patterns that give you early indications and warnings. if we step back, not only to 9/11 but just a year ago before benghazi, you look for and you see patterns. on 9/11 we had indications indicating method of attack. there were reports specifically of planes flying into building. just over a year ago, we had repeated protests out of multiple countries, egypt, libya, syria, leading up to and crescendoing into the death of our ambassador in benghazi unfortunately on the anniversary of 9/11 of last year. this year we're seeing a similar pattern. we're seeing a confluence of prison breaks in libya, britain breaks in syria, britain breaks in iraq, all of which have totaled over 2,000 hard core terrorists back on the playing
battlefield. that signature combined with the intelligence that we're receiving including direct communications between al qaeda headquarters instructing al qaeda in the arabian peninsula to attack, that confluence of patterns certainly suggests that the u.s. needs to be taking a more aggressive security possess ewe. that's what we're seeing now. host: let get your reaction, the charges have been filed, one libya mitchia leader has hilitia, how stoont is this? what it enables us to do is now th criminal prosecution in place, we have plenty to go with the libyans and ask for extradition of individuals that we are tracking and now that we believe have committed a crime. to have a did
cooperate. host: you can join the conversation on twitter and facebook. bob is joining us from carson city, nevada. ood morning. caller: hello? host: you're on the air. caller: the terrorists have done nothing compared to the terrorists in washington, d.c. the only thing that is going to start making sense is having a constitutional amendment limiting corporations, political contributions to $2,000 apiece. host: ok. a little bit off topic unless you want to respond to that. let's go next to rico joining us from michigan.
renteria line, good morning. caller: hi. i think the american people are idiots. you say that we can go to super bowls and travel overseas and yet you have the t.s.a. looking up our ass at the airports. >> you're reaction to the t.s.a. part? >> first of all, i certainly appreciate that sometimes security somebody creates limited inconvenience. our colleagues at the t.s.a. fulfill a very important mission and i would just ask rico the question that when i was at d.h.s. when people complained about t.s.a., we have to do our best to make them better. they have consistently improved in the overall professionalism. when you think about it, their mission is to keep you and me safe. if i asked you the hypothetical question, what if we had two airlines. one is called no security
airlines and one is called t.s.a., you have a choice of which one you want to fly. you can take whatever risk you want. which one are you going to put your children on? i think at the end of the day, most people are going to say that they would prefer the peace of mind of knowing that after terrorists have devastated over and over and over again that airlines are one of their primarily targets, most people will appreciate that the mission of the t.s.a. is important and that they would elect to go on that airlines. every time i get on, i turn to them and say as long as they're respectful, and 99% of them are, our response to the t.s. folks should be thanks for protecting us. our guest is chad sweet, co-founder and ceo of the chertoff group. i want to get are your reaction to this story based on the reporting of abc news that al qaeda may have developed a new form of explosion, a liquid
explosives and essentially the technique allows you to dip clothes into a liquid that would make the textile explosive upon drawing and one official calling it ingenious. guest: it's a great place where we can't underestimate our enemy. al qaeda, whenever we create a measure, they do a countermeasure it's this back and forth between them. the group when we were in government, we invested in technologies and procedures to try to foil explosives and outside of government we do, are actively involved with people in that sector. what i'll tell you is that right now, what we saw after the underwear bomber in 2009 was finally it took that incident, which was unfortunate where almost 300 americans died over the city of detroit, only then was it political well to
see we need to use 21st century technology which we have against the terrorists. so if you look at it right now in a world where they only have to be right 1% of the time, we have to right 100% of time on defense, we should use one of our few advantages which is technology. the vast majority of explosive detection systems in place today aren't capable of detecting either this type of clothing soaked in liquid explosives nor are they capable of detecting even a bottom in the body, the surgically implanted ones or even something as basic as the underwear bomber. why is that? most of these magnetometers, they detect metal. that is not the explosive itself. it's usually the only metal involved is the detonator. so if you're able to design explosives with no metal detector, metal detonator, you
effectively invade that system. so we're living in the stone ages on most of the technology we're using. we need to use our wide advantage which is to bring forward this modern advanced imaging technology to allow us to level the playing field. the last thing i would say in response to your last caller, i know that the invasiveness that t.s.a. sometimes hard to do during patdowns, much of that could be avoided, much of the inconvenience could be avoided if we embraced and used more robustly the best technology we have available. >> for you personally when you think about this topic, whether it's implanting a device inside your body, liquid explosives, where do they come up with these ideas? who is behind it? >> well, they are very creative. what is challenging is they're not just tapping the minds of one crazy person in one part of the world. they have developed a network.
one of the dark sides of the internet is you are able to through the internet gather and exchange ideas with each other over vast areas. so the mastermind of most of the bombs that we have been tracking is a gentleman who was e architect of the underwear bombs, we believe he was also the architect of the bomb in body bomb that was used in 2007 to attempt to assassinate the inistry of interior of saudi arabia's head. so they are the leading edge of bombmaking in the world and we set up all over the globe, it's a combined explosives exploitation cell. 's a way for us, whenever an i.e.d. goes off if the world,
we have a joint task force to get the forensic off that sites. we were able to track a variety of different things. each bomb, there are elements of the bomb that reveal signatures of who made it. so at the end of the day, to answer your question, the creativity that is being driven here, they got a network that they're using among many people, we got a network to do things with our own collaboration with our allies. that's how we're going to win this fight, a network to beat a network. you have to have the full value and experience of all of the network that we can bring to bear. host: this program is carried live on c-span radio heard coast to coast. we welcome the audience on radio. our guest is chad sweet, co-founder and ceo of the chertoff group. he worked at the department of homeland security and also the chief of staff there and the director of operations at the c.i.a. susan is joining us from fort
myers, florida, thanks for waiting. caller: am i confused that the emen government did send the president directly, mr. clinton a wire of some sorts saying they had a high-value target there. he cannot act on it because of our relationship with the yemen government. there were basically, in a way asking them to come get him? guest: think you for your question. i am not aware of that specific cable. i do know that osama bin laden was in a different neighboring country. after evaluation of options,
president clinton did elect to send a cruise missile into sudan which did take care of the facility where it was believed to be hold up. he was not aware there. i'm not aware of that particular cable from the yemeni government. host: comment on our twitter page -- guest: a great point jim is making. basically, you are right. in many ways it is. t has now been revealed we were listening in on the communications between the eader of the team. what that unfortunately showed is it's revealed that most likely we had their cell phone or email communications that enabled us to do that.
the revelation of that, not only the method but the specific individuals talking means we have now burned that source. you could imagine how tough it is to get the direct communication of the top leaders of your adversary and in our world of the c.i.a., that would be the gold mine. anyone that close to getting that close to the top leadership would be commended and is a gold mine. unfortunately we have just shut off that gold minute and burnt that source. we will no longer be able to use them in future operations. they are going quiet on those lines and move to different sources. very damaging revelation that the communication, if it's true, was these two individuals. the second point is it is disconcerting because if you look at the sensitive side the
exploitation that we got out of the compound when we took down bin laden, what you will see is two college like of thumb drives and computers with data that came out of that compound. you see a correspondence and a dialogue between bin laden and his lieutenants. this represents 1.0. basically communicating to the lieutenants, don't attempt these low level attacks. you need to focus on more of what i did, more of the iconic igh level attacks like 9/11. basically folks in yemen said, no, no, we need to get points on the board. we need to show the world we're still around. there was a heated debate between the older generation and younger generation. as long as bin laden was there, he had a hold over there and ironically as a governor on their behavior. now that he is gone, this communication that just
happened represents a significant shift. the replacement for bin laden is more or less conceding that the younger generation is right, that he is going to go ahead and use al qaeda in the pen anyone sewella as one of his primary operational arms and basically rewarding them for these more low level attacks like the underwear bomber, like the printer cartridges and like potentially the attempted assassination of the minister of interior in audi arabia. host: were you aware of this n.s.a. phone data collection, the metta data operation? uest: i was not. caller: my comment is everyone is mad about the tsa, but i love them. yes, it is an inconvenience but would you rather be in the air at 10,000 feet, 5,000 feet, whatever it is and your plane
blow up? yes, they need an overhaul of the system, but we need them. guest: think you for that point. you are exactly right. we all have to have certain things to keep us safe. some people might not like to stop at red light and an intersection, but we recognize if you're mature that we need some way of coordinating car traffic at an intersection. some tradeoffs in convenience are necessary for public safety. your point is exactly right, which is very few people would want a complete no security approach to the most repeated threat factors of al qaeda. the question isn't whether we should have some security. it's how can we make it better. you said it very well. there's an opportunity to make a better in terms of continued investment and professionals, and also, an opportunity to
make the check points of the future better. there are ways that technology can be used so you don't have to take off your shoes. you don't have to take off your jacket. you can go through with mascara or a coat if you're a man. those technologies are there, but we have to be willing to embrace and deploy them. bringing us back to today's discussion, one of the reasons i think this administration leaned forward on closing down temporarily some of these embassies is they don't have some of those technicalologist today configured into all of those facilities. if the threat stream that we're getting is that there is a surgically implanted bomb, what they need time to do is what we did after the underwear bomber is forward deploy more of those advanced imaging technicalologist that in fact either do trace detection of the explosive or actually do the imaging below the clothing and into the body to see if there is an explosive on a
erson. host: let's give a 10-year comparison of the department of homeland security. it essentially put together 22 federal agencies, an estimateded 180,000 employees of budget back in 2003 $36 billion. today 240,000 employees in the budget of nearly $60 billion. this is a huge department. guest: it is. what is a little bit not understood, though. it wasn't that those were just growing. those were actually separated into different agencies. it was a little bit frightening. if i can use the analogy, i played football in southeast texas. it's almost like we had a team of football players running around on the field with no coach. what the 9/11 commission identified was because we did
not have the agencies on the home team coordinated, we needed a quarterback. that is the whole role of the the department of homeland security is. it brings together all of the different agencies that have equities in defending the homeland into one team and under one coach. the size of the organization candidly shouldn't be shocking. all it was taking the existing pieces, every one of those pieces was there already. we brought them together for better coordination. host: independent line with chad sweet, formerly with the department of homeland security and the c.i.a. go ahead, eddie. caller: i have a question about the tsa stuff. they keep saying we need this. the problem is you stop one or two things, but you're taking and putting the whole country -- you keep referring to people
going through an intersection at a stop sign, they have a choice. go to a different street. and you do not have that on an airplane. we don't have two airlines like you suggested. if we did, i would take the other one. you make it too much trouble to go through and get on an airplane. you are not at war against us, you are at war against the people over there. that's what you all have to realize. that's the only comment i have. host: thanks for the call. guest: again, i appreciate his perspective. i fundamentally disagree. if you use the street intersection and the street lights, it is not the option in your town if you go to a streetlight and did not like it, you can drive around and go to another intersection. that may have a stop sign. the fundamental issue around
public safety is there. they are not there to inconvenience you or me. they are there to protect us. i will agree with you on, though, is we want to make it at least inconvenient as possible. there are means, as i mentioned before, that we can do that. another thing if you will see is director pistol has introduced the pre-check. i would highly encourage you to consider signing up. it is voluntary. no one has to do it. it enables us to bring in additional tools that we have that are risk-based screening. if you are willing to provide more information about yourself, you could be essentially it like a trusted traveler program. that type of 21st century technology and process is exactly the way we can make the airport safe and more convenient. host: another screening
question from one of our viewers. with all of the information that is collected, you still need to have american shoes, referring to the shoes coming off as you go through that screening office at airports? guest: that is right. today there are technologies that can help detect explosives in shoes, right now those technologies have not been deployed. it is not an easy challenge to fix. we saw the bomber in the regional incident. when reed did it the first time, that is what led to that prohibition. since then you will see a number of opportunities in the coming days for that type of technology to be deployed. i think one of the implications of what just happened this week with respect to the embassy closings, i think you will see a revisiting of are we doing enough, especially at our embassies abroad to deploy the kind of technicalologist that would detect a bomb in the
shoe. host: a question that came up last night with the president on nbc asking the president about how serious the terrorist threat is that resulted and the closing of embassies in north after are can and the portions of the middle east. here is the president's response -- guest: it is significant enough we're taking every precaution. we had already done a lot to bolster security around the world. especially in the middle east or north africa where the threats tend to be highest. whenever we see a threat stream that we think is specific enough that we can take specific precautions, then we do so. it is a reminder for all the progress we have made, that getting bin laden, putting pakistan and afghanistan back on the field, this radical, violent extremism is still out
there. we have to stay on top of it. it is also a reminder of how courageous that embassy personnel tend to be. you could never have 100 percent security in some of these placed. the countries themselves sometimes are ill-equipped to provide the security that he -- we want. even if we reinforce it, there are still vulnerabilities. host: the president last night. chad sweet. one of the questions that has arisen, why go public with the threat? guest: two things. one is the actual going public of the actions that were taken in response to the intelligence is one thing. the going public of the actual source of the intelligence is another. i think the latter will be controversial. and other words, it is not good it was revealed one of the intercepts was between the leaders of al qaeda
headquarters and al qaeda and the arabian peninsula. host: how was that revealed? guest: somebody, the first porter that came in, the administration reportedly asked the "new york times" to not reveal that information. the "new york times" with held that information and then only after it had been pointed out that it is coming out in difference sources, the administration apparently then approved acknowledging it more broadly. this is a problem. if we reflect back on the use of offensive fibers to take down the iranian centrifuges, again, i have not read into that program. i don't know whether it existed or not. there were reports that were later released and confirmed by the administration through david sanger and the "new york times" that an operation called olympic games was in fact used to do that. those types of revelations are
damaging and hurt our ability to operate. my friends in the cia are very upset with that kind of method and source revealed. it would have been much better to keep that quiet because we have now burnt that channel. we will now have to find alternate ways. that was a gold mine to have direct communication between the leaders. on the first point, why let the world know through the state department? that's a good thing. it does not get into exact sources or methods but let the public know why they're taking the actions they're taking and what to look out for. the one thing i will say as a constructive criticism, we were in the administration, so i did not want to be too much of an armchair quarterback. we have an away game and a home game. the away game will let the public know what is going on the away game will let the public know what is going on overseas. we also have a home game.
vhs has set up 100 centers to keep them posted on what we're seeing abroad. there was no unclassified communication with state and local partners in the fusion centers. that is a problem. they should have done a joint intelligence brief on that. that means we need to tighten up the away game and home game. host: post from this morning. given the center of the terrorist threat. marianne calling us from pittsburgh on the democrats' line. good morning. caller: i am calling about the president. i seen him on jay leno last night.
he did not capture anyone from benghazi now he is on the campaign to capture the terrorist attack us. i think he is nothing but a joke. he is not a president. i did not know what. he is terrible. he just made it worse. one more thing i would like to add, where did they come up with this video game? these parents have the right to know what happened to their children, and how the president i am not aware if you know this, but the president did not invite the mother, sean that smith's mother to receive his medal because she spoke out against him. they are telling her she is not immediate family. how dare him?
that is the most terrible thing i have ever heard of any president. he is the world's worst. think you. guest: i am not aware of that. i am sorry i cannot speak to that. soft targets versus hard targets, what is the difference? guest: the analogy would be a match in an embassy that is extremely well-guarded typically verses of conflict, which is usually smaller and in a more pro -- remote part of the country. imagine a police station or military base verses a school or hospital. those facilities all have a great facility. part of the problem when we put facilities abroad, no matter how fortified they are, there is an asymmetric red for the host government ultimately has to be responsible for protecting those installations. as we saw and the hostage crisis in the 1970's, no matter how many marines you have guarding
an embassy, at some point they will be overwhelmed by the external forces. that is why it ultimately when you look at different emphases, they have different gradations for her -- for how hard or soft targets they are. in addition, some are in high- risk areas. part of what was taken in action is beth and value added -- they evaluate it which are most vulnerable and made the call they made. host: a question for mary. how detectable a surgically implanted device speed? guest: it is hard. two primary technologies we have. the other one is traced this section. they can also go into the body. they have the greatest potential
about, many of them are not fully deployed at an embassy abroad. that is part of what we have to have a discussion about. also the case at home that we do not have them fully deployed in the areas here. host: on the joining us from new jersey. democrats line. -- bonnie. caller: with a background with goldman sachs and morgan stanley, i am sure you are sensitive to situations that can afford an opportunity for profit.
i do not think there is a big opportunity for profit when there is a culture of chaos and fear and ignorance. there is a screening machine that did not make anyone say, but a privatized situation where a great deal of profit was made. for the most part, all of our national security now is privatized. this is not going to make us any safer. i think what would make us safer is being made aware of situation and having outlets like the old- fashioned kind of news organizations that do inform us. as far as the underwear bomber, he was flashed but paid in cash and was able to board a plane. i have to scratch my head and other various body parts about how that would happen with the expense of security that our taxpayer dollars are supplying. guest: thank you for that. we have had this discussion before. what i would say is first, on the issue a profit, when we were in office, we have no commercial relationship with many of these technologies and supported the deployment of this when we were in office responsible for protecting lives. now we are helping to provide private-sector solutions to meet
the challenges originally the screeners at the airport were private and then made public. so i want to correct that point. on the question of the underwear bomber, you raise a really good point. the underwear bomber, there were indications before he got on the plane that would have signaled he should have been at least suspect. you are exactly right. that is an example of what i talked about before, we need the ability to have better process and technology. on the process side, exactly what the tsa administrator is doing today what is called pre- check where you are able to get voluntary information provided by citizens voluntarily and that
can build trust because you are able to get trusted signatures and algorithms to show the individual is not a threat. verses the underwear bomber. got on a threat with 1-way ticket and bought with cash. this should have him put into secondary screening at a minimum. i would completely agree that the combination of using the data and signatures is. host: a comment on the twitter page. if someone wants to hurt as bad enough, no solution works for ever. let me take that and ask you about what "the guardian" is reporting with regards to yemen. al qaeda arabian peninsula, a new acura -- act as acronym, how is this different or some or similar?
>> it was set up by the no. 3 guy for osama bin laden. not in the forefront, not as visible. very close with the inner circle. he became a very popular within the movement. essentially an understanding that once he fled the united states and went to yemen, he became the face ofaqap. -- face of aqap. they had a different philosophy than the older generation of al qaeda led by osama bin laden. initially there were in charge where the operatives would submit loyalty to them and they would only execute operations they authorized.
they wanted 9/11 attacks meaning high-profile a conic attacks. the younger generation said no, we have got to start putting points on the board. we're looking of relevance because we have not successful attacks. they had a rift between the older generation and younger generation. when osama bin laden was killed, the irony was he was acting as a governor on the younger generation. now that he is gone, and instead of being like a snake recut the
head and the body dies, more like a cancer where it has to be put into remission but will take a lot of chemotherapy and attacking the cells. these have now franchise out in a very malignant way. the most being aqap. host: i want to ask you a final question in a moment, which is what worries you the most. virginia next. last call from cincinnati, ohio. caller: good morning. i agree with the previous calller about profits they made off of the taxpayer. i think he is a very disengaged president when he should stay in washington, working with the congress.
and why advertise these closings? why not simply do it quietly. he is trying to capitalize on it. all he does get the higher -- ire up of the american people. guest: what i would say it is difficult to execute this brought of closings without having some type of announcement. my sense is that they have tried to make it known that so that those that are traveling in the region and those affected by it are aware of it.
the second thing we do not know, there could have been intent to help with al qaeda on the back foot, which means the decision to let this be known was a way of telling the enemy, we got you. we want you to know we are on to you, and this action is meant to put them on the back foot to say we did not know there were listening in this close, therefore, we need to readjust and may even need to call off the plot. i think we have to give benefits of the doubt to the professionals advising on this. again, i do not see how they could not have made the announcement without letting a broad number of people know about it, given the broad region it was in. and one of the best things that came out of 9/11 was better coordination on the way game and home game. they should put out a joint intelligence bulletin that
fusions here at home could use with mayors, governors, chief of police, etc.. they need to know what is going on a broad and how that affects them at home. in this case is clear we need to tighten up coordination between the away game and home team. this is are rare exception where it could have been better. host: what does worry you the most? guest: complacency. we have had an extraordinary run in fighting against al qaeda. imagine yourself back on the day
of 9/11 and then day 912 -- the day 9/12, if someone had asked you would you be willing to take a million-dollar but that no one will die on u.s. soil from a terrorist act said years from now? the answer you would probably say is i will take that bet because i think it will happen really soon. instead what we saw is it took all the way until the fort hood shooting and the boston massacre most recently. i think that shows the tremendous effectiveness of what we have put in place. you hope success does not breed complacency and the american public continues to show we are mindful and not overreacting and will remain vigilant in a thoughtful way. host: we will leave it there. thank you for being with us. when we come back, we will turn our issue -- attention to the >> the new york times reporter
, and att about his book 7:00 alive town hall on media coverage of war. call in with your take on the issue and send us your comments. holdingman tom cole is three town hall meetings in his oklahoma restrict over the congressional recess. one was yesterday in more, oklahoma, with the topic of in essays surveillance. surveillance. >> if the government shuts down does that mean they do not get salaries as well? that would somehow motivate a
to work onresident things if they get no salary. fine, but neither would anyone at tinker air force base. >> a will not let it go long without getting salaries. they will work on the issues. backed the pat -- i respect the passionate opinion because i share it. republican ingh the house and senate it would not have passed. every single one voted against it. elect thelike we president or helped reelect him.
the day shutting down the government is a very recent heat thing and not like to work in my view. risky thing and not likely to work in my view. i share the concerns about obama care and trying to do what we can to stop that. i think the biggest frustration is with inc. this is owing to is going toink this be a monstrosity and we need to stop it. we would do what we can, but it is too difficult. ofis frustrating to a lot people considering once it goes effect, it is going to
radically change things. sidee people on the other who fight tooth and nail. care.her side does not all they want to do is win. they are playing dirty, and we are not. is question i want to get to the situation that is growing where you have a government cy, the nsa, which every three is going to as secret core and getting cell phone records of every single american.
f the eye that went fbi that wentg -- to court saying they do not need check your e-mail. that has nosame irs compunction about abusing up doherty. -- authority. so far no one has paid a price for that. nothing is being done to rein in these government agencies. it's the only privacy you have is what the government -- from my perspective the only privacy you have is what the government says you have.
i was disappointed you voted ing the restrict nsa. i would like to know why you voted against restricting from collecting our iformation, and secondly, you really thought it was not when can weeal, expect you to publish your calls online so we know who you call? >> great question. is one of the most important discussions in the i think it will continue to be.
stop thee totally program. brought ther having amendment. i do not blame you for using the only vehicle you have. what we really need is a series of hearings where you hold people accountable if they have done anything wrong. they say nothing has happened at the irs. enough has happened. there are people under criminal investigation right now. there will be laws, if you look at the bill that has gone through the subcommittee, there is real cuts in the budget in
response to this, so i think the same thing needs to happen in -- thoughtfull not wegation, but i do ought to immediately toss out of program until we think about it. i will give you an opportunity to respond. i appreciate your answer. if a secret program was abuse we would not know it. we would not know until it was too late. i have read the way this eel was supposed to look -- this deal was supposed to work, while they
were going to moderate these phone calls and get these records from anyone who was who was aorist -- suspected terrorist, then they were going to get an order. i felt a little uneasy about ift, but i remember thinking it is two people contacting unknown terrorist, maybe, -- a maybe, butist, there are things we can do to the united states safer without saying we need a database of your phone calls, e- mails. they have the capability of doing it. we do not know what they are doing.
not, buty they are is if they have the power, eventually it will get abused. my biggest hope is you will take a look at that. people are saying, i know these people running the program. good people. they are trustworthy. good people are not always going to be there. the people in the irs were great people but they were doing what their bosses tell them to. i would like you to keep in mind there is no way you can trade
freedom for total security. >> i agree. will keep looking at this and come at it from a legislative angle. so far we have not found individual abuses. a guy who says america is not free and runs to china and about it is not exactly my idea of a great american patriot. the issue is worth looking at, but i do put a lot of trust in people who have defended the united states of america and defended it with honor and valor , and when they walk in and tell
me, this is what it is. that, then iing have to know more about that before i jerk the rug out from under them. it will continue to be in the press. i am always worried about concentrations of power and individual liberty. i think that is what keeps america for he -- america free. abuses. got to see the you have got to know what they are. i do not inc. we have lost our freedom. if we had we would not be having this conversation on c-span. is still our a mark of both country.
-- of a great country. happens.ee what i think congress will pass a likes that.ody presidentialn the election. we do not get to a point the attorney general. we have a lot of republican candidates running. >> coming up in an hour, a live town hall of media coverage of war. then the book, fellow journalist iraq. untold stories from a ra
>> thanks for coming out on an unreasonably wet june evening. it is nice to see such a turnout. asconflict has been injuries, as deadly for journalists as the war in a rack. -- iraq. killedrnalists were not because they were at the wrong place at the wrong time. they were killed because of who they were. theywere killed because
dared to write, to photograph, to videotape. 93 murders, and how many people were did? none so far. most of those killed have been iraqis working for iraqi news organizations. it has been dangerous. it has been particularly dangerous for iraqis. up byave been picked , andgents, gangs individuals seeking to silence critics. i fear the real number is far greater. i know two dozen who have sought refuge here in the united
states. last year see pj did not document work related killings of journalists in a rack. -- iraq. we need to consider what happened. outletsered 44 media shut down. that was intended to be a warning shot to media outlets that they should toe the line. the proposed cyber crime bill ford carry life in prison broadcasting what they would deem to be false facts intending to damage the economy.
of 10uspended the license channels, accusing them of sectarian incitement. jazeera, and al then there is the near elimination of western coverage of war. russia's few international organizations still maintain a presence in baghdad. littlee sucking up what oxygen and dollars are left for foreign coverage. the country is teetering on the brink of another civil war. this to be one of those navelgazing discussions.
can all sit up here and tell war stories. we can look forward at what i .ope will be important lessons we all hope we will never have to cover another war as awful as this has been. i am privileged to be up here whose workcolleagues i am sure all of you have seen over the years. iraq and sometimes from point beyond. .o my left is ahmed he has the most interesting resume of perhaps any of us up here. before the war he was us go sculptor and a
professor of art at the time dad university. closed forwar it was a time, and he decided to try to make a living as a journalist. most recently as a field producer for al jazeera english. in northrently serving carolina. left, hannah is currently a national correspondent. she spent two years covering the war in a rack.
-- iraq. she was one of the preeminent covering the arab spring a couple years ago. to my far left, michael is an amazing photojournalist who has been shooting regularly for a quarter-century. you have probably seen him most frequently on the website of "the new york times." his his photography and writing. he is the author of the book to the right of
the bottles of wine. when we are done, get a bottle of wine, pick up the book, and get him to sign it for you. call bsually what we matter. has one of the greatest lines in addition to awards he has one. he has won every significant award a photographer of his stature could win. in 2001 he was included in a book called the best american nonrequired reading. i would like to start by asking you. as recently as
for, andre you working if we said we work for an american organization, we were in danger. worked for the times, they said it was fine because the french do not have an army. every journalist was considered working for an american organization. people used to look at us as if we were happy to have explosions. they did not know we were trying and talkthe truth about what really happened.
the threats were coming from the armed groups, the and sometimes american forces. from iraqi forces. after a while it changed. no one was allowed to work. now after the americans are gone we saw the army and the police are becoming more hostile. upwas very usual to get beat by the army or police, have the camera broken.
also, we started seeing becausests targeted they work for this specific or radio station or tv channel, and now we are having journalists targeted because .hey are sunni or shiite >> when you look at some of the statements about news and thetions accusations of them being subversive or are working against the national interest. it could have been statements by the coalition press authority a decade ago. talk a little about the
astrictions you guys faced journalists imposed by the u.s. and the degree to which you see a legacy of those restrictions as implemented i did they government. learn and copy some of the worst of the u.s. administration? ande would roam the streets work pretty freely. in late 2003 it started to tighten up. beginning i do not remember signing in restrictions. then we would sign up page. it got longer and longer.
signing 15 page document that said we could not photograph wounded soldiers without their permission. toevery instance i was able document of photographers taking pictures of soldiers killed in they were instantly banned. the news organizations were not able to get access to combat , and you saw the iraqis pick it up. first hospitals were off-limits. then they would not let us photograph iraqi soldiers. it grew and grew. in 2007 i remember mallett key
ioing on tv and saying -- malik propaganda,e doing and we instantly became targets. i left in january of 2012, and i remember obama saying we are democratic iraq with free press. you would be killed if you had tried to report independently. the last car bombing i covered was when they hit the intelligence headquarters, and i got there right away and there were several friends there, and they had their cameras in their pockets.
slrsdid not even carry because it was too much of a target. they would not take their cameras out of their pockets, not trying you are to sneak photos? they said, they do not try to sneak photos. they will get beaten. they had not taken a picture. they had been there all day. years,ve there for two and i went back and covered for seven or eight years, and it was a mixed bag. they would have people you could talk to or were really steering you away, and god forbid you hear a little news. god forbid you do a story, and
did you get to talk to your parents? we are on blackout because they committed suicide. southern iraq was known to have a good military operations so it was much freer to work there. they allowed much more .nfettered access they also reached out to the iraqi press and gave them access. was an example of what worked. you could get his proportionate disproportionate coverage. individuals gelled and got it.
they couldas best as to do workshops, saying pr is your friend. you cannot totally clamp down. i was also there a year ago. was held inmit baghdad. this was going to be the triumphant homecoming. here is all of these in meters from around the country, so there was this big werevaganza, and they determined to show how open and free and democratic. we got weeklong visas. there was security, but we had
come this way to interview this person and we are here to help you. home, andgnitaries go they say, you have to leave now. we have no place to put you. off you go. there was nothing beyond that that it is only for three days, and then things go back to normal. >> i went to a rack in 2002 to cover one of those referendums. they used to let you stay the whole week. challengesok at the journalists have faced over the from restrictions imposed by the americans and now thenraqi government, and
you look at the challenges journalists continue to face with the precarious security environment. yes, we had a golden era after but itmer invasion, slowed precipitously pretty quickly. sick hereook at the -- at theallenges, security challenges, the fact that they do not have much money us understand how you rank these sorts of challenges. what was the real impediment to
being able to do the work you do? i should note in spite of those you do remarkable work. triumph, but help us understand how these factors laden with official government restrictions. it was expensive. there were two routes you could take. nothing, and the other was $1000 a day. i remember guys telling me they flew to kuwait and the u.s. military flew them in for free. a lot of times they were there
>> you had to do it smartly. you could not just jump out and hail a cab and off you go. you could do it if you had a trusted team, if you had enough to trust friends and colleagues and to know that is a good story, but i cannot go to falluja right now to do that, and you have to walk away from them, unfortunately. trust between iraqi staff and correspondence. we know the country.
we can go back home. and know whatcate is happening. when they ask us to go to isluja, and we know it notly, we would say, it is a good idea, and they would say, we have to go to falluja. i am saying it is not a good idea. you are afraid to go. i heard this a lot of times. i said, you want to challenge me. but if something happens, do not blame me. with time the trust started to build. we would say it is off-limits,
and they would say ok. we became the eyes and ears for some time until things started to cool off a little bit. except for photographers. we could not do it by ourselves. >> it is self policing. it worries me because i do not yria,he same wing in seriou where we did not like it when someone comes in, a freelancer becauses off in a cab, that puts us at risk. should that person get kidnapped, it feeds that industry.
backlash one of i propose we said, make an army of the journalist. are going to go kidnap them and teach them a lesson so they did not put all of us at risk. it was serious is this. we did not want them getting us killed. business. >> a lot of times they do not know what is happening on the ground. they think it is an easy task. they can talk to whoever they want, and sometimes they do not them, sone to help they just pick up a taxi and say, take me to falluja, so they
go there, and they get surprised that people being hostile to reporters, and the unthinkable can happen. >> people got killed that way. when the iraqis said it was time go.o, it was time to >> this highlights what a vital role our iraqi colleagues played in the process. the most valuable were the iraqis who worked with us. many of them were coming from different backgrounds. they had a good sense of reading
people, reading the street, and you ignored them at your own peril. aboutd go on endlessly the number of lives saved because of their incredible thinking. stories yearbig the guys that were on the street were a iraqis. people would check the neighborhood beforehand. they would do preliminary interviews. sometimes they would do all the interviews. great personalat peril.
who would individuals have to return home to their caseses, where in many they were lying. threatened, be not, in some cases killed. it was only after some years that the u.s. government finally got around to starting to issue andial immigrant visas, still far too slowly for a number of them. >> congress approved 25,004 iraqi translators that worked with the media, the military. these were eyes and ears on the ground. 4600 were issued today and the
program expires in september. something forward looking to take from this. we were just talking about the mutual friend of ours that sat out the first round because he believed things would improve and he could stay and work as a journalist. i voted for these guys, this is my community. what is there to fear? thiss also applied for resettlement option. we thought, one day our bureaus will shutter and we will all go home. the public's attention will shift elsewhere as it has. the free press, the probing press, the independent press. entireits maybe the staff, the ones still alive have
fled. ande are in the ukraine atlanta, massachusetts. .e have not left a bad legacy we were a bureau that were in between on slow days, her talking about journalism, that their own. they would do all their own stories. none of it exists anymore. >> what prompted you to put this focus group together? compellingncredibly and arresting images over the weekend? which people react
differently to some of these images over the passage of time help us understand the feedback you have received, when and whether some of these difficult to look at images, it is less vital to see because they depict the truth of war. how does the prospective change? are we able to look at imagery of the iraq war, her very difficult to get published in the early years of conflict? >> the answer is simple. not seeing my history of the war reflected. the american people in particular, i am learning all
like the burned and charred bodies of the american contractors killed their in 2004. there is a crowd of people stepping on them and emulating them. there was no way we were going to get these pictures published. photographers why they took them, they said that we take them for history. we know we can't get it out there now, but sunday, people will be ready to look at this. i am not trying to glorify violence. just the office said. -- opposite. hopefully it will be something that we look at the next time we think about rushing off on a military adventure. i want to say publicly, i have never been to iraq or the middle east.
a great idea, we will get rid of this guy and install democracy. what can be complicated about that? it did not go so well. we need to have warning signs that people can muck out for the future. >> if you talk to government officials and power back in 2003, 2005, they would argue that a lot of the intrigue that to defeatist, to focus on the negative.
>> most americans have never seen a picture of a dead american soldier. and going to a cemetery to photograph funerals, they were not allowed. you're not allowed the have a taking the photos of the funeral. if you wanted to have this immortalized, the pentagon said this was off-limits. they were smart about it. it is an issue of privacy for the soldiers, they have the right to privacy. this is what i was told repeatedly. it was smart because they deposited themselves as defenders of the soldiers and put us in the position of people
that wanted this respect the soldiers. this is one of the public undertakings. we were constantly fighting back against that. got it they want it to be depicted for what it is. >> we got this all the time. we said this was bullshit. i don't want to make it sound like -- the u.s. military is not monolithic at all. smart,f them are progressive, a lot of the young unharmed, one guy had a
rock band in berlin before he was arrested. you run up against these lieutenants and they are totally smart. people toe american see what is going on. going frome story of unit to unit and some say that you can't take a picture. i don't want to see a hangnail on my soldiers, nothing. she would go to another unit. unit where got to a they said we don't have the things that we need and we need you to show people in washington what it is we are up against. >> i have been monopolizing a lot of time here. and number of you that have spent time out there, the people in thiscredibly engaged
pleaseissues, can you wait for the microphone to come to you? thatyour questions brief, would be great. about where the breakdown occurs as far as what the pictures are not being published? you have the state department, the department of defense preventing that. there is also the equation of the news organizations. can you talk about that process? if we can identify where the breakdown is, maybe we can address it. >> that is a tough one. fought with editors to get more powerful motivations.
editors did not want to publish these photos and it's a people don't want to see this. i heard this constantly from different editors around the world. and what is it that i sent back, maybe the most graphic photo i have ever taken. a guy just behind me of staff donald land mine and was cut in half. mine anded on a land was cut in half. not only was the image not published, but it had been put under lock and key, nobody could even access this photo. it was not just the military. there was no clamor from the american people.
that is just iraq. people have to step up and put pressure on the news organizations and the editors. >> i have been in this situation before. sometimes we have to stay longer than photographers. we have to take our time taking pictures. would travel several times and the gunfire -- into gunfire between american contractors and snipers.
pictures and took them back to the office, and we sent them to paris. them and theyot say because there are lots of bodies. >> where is the line? we don't need burning bodies him the paper every day. we do need them occasionally. mood debateoming a because of the expanded television, have you really want to see what it looks like, you can now. alh the growth of the don't shyand, they away what it looks like on the
receiving end. >> that is the difference between going out and actively confronting people occasionally with the true orders of this. horrors of this. >> i work in a journalist assistance program and i was wondering if you could talk iraq,what we learned from as far as going out of afghanistan al. >> i will take a stab at that one and kick it over to my fellow panelists. the visa program does not apply for afghans working for u.s. organizations.
gray translator for the , there was not legal pathway. it was eight or nine years. threats of intimidation because they were for u.s. news organizations there. not for afghans that were all news organizations but for international forces there, it is a nato mission and not a u.s. mission. you have a number of afghans that work for u.s. forces in eligible. there are legislative fixes under way, here it is still at an embryonic state right now.
journalistsw were working for western news organizations. reality of the war. just don't have the same pathways. for those that apply to two or three years ago it gets caught up in this sort of limbo, what is being called a security review. this is great example is the 70- year-old mother that has been left in security review for two years. >> what he said. >> it will take a long time.
of august 2012. i was supposed to arrive in july 1. they called the and they said your flight has been cancelled. they said we have no idea why. last medical check was done on july 15 and since it is only 14 days left, you have to do it again. i had sold my car, my furniture, almost my house and that only my luggage and my family waiting to get more on the plane. they said it has been cancelled. these are the difficulties they are facing.
for the newat work york times did not get a lot of support for the government once they got here. i have friends that workhorse, we were covering combat together in different places and she got her visa. one month later, she got a job at macy's for minimum wage. she was working in the shoe department. i think that they got $500 a month for rent. you are on your own now. he's people are coming here with their entire families. a lot of them don't speak english. use ofly urging them to
a lot oforganizations, them who were settled during the recession. they are being taken by out of work americans. is really overwhelming. they're coming with the hot trauma of 10 years of vicious sectarian war and occupation. of can't really trust some .he placement staying in baghdad for the , who decided to
place him when he comes to the states. this set, here we go, here is a spot in the apartment. that is not going to work. turnd not have anywhere to if he did not have his colleagues checking up on him. >> i consider myself one of the lucky ones. i consider myself lucky. it was something like $3,000 or $5,000 a month. now we are hardly making $1,000.
just the others so that we can feed our families. why did we come here? we can make money or probably .ie, >> maybe my kids will benefit from this. they run the iraq refugees assistance project that is here in newwith yale wh york that has been helpful for a number of organizations. this helping to navigate very complicated bureaucracy.
i am sure she would be willing to enter them. answer them. >> i'm anne cooper, and i wanted to ask you to talk more about what the media is like, the content of the media chico hot --e iraqi medi >> the iraqi media? >> yes. how does it compare with saddam hussein's time? can you find out more? can you figure out what is really going on? >> we used to have one party, it controlled most of the media outlets.
they used to say the same thing and use the same speech. have 340, we registered political parties. each one of those parties has its own newspaper, radio station, and its own tv channel. these parties have different positions when it comes to the of what is happening in iraq. so let's give an example. newspapers call them insurgents. some of them are called resistance. if you are in my place, which
one would you believe? it means they have to choose which one is closer to what you think and you are and where you come from. and then by all the others even if they are telling the truth. his his his this is the situation right now. over political views and political agendas. channels,the main even within their own messaging, sometimes it is different. when he is speaking against portia, it will say -- shia, it "anti-y on the crawl,
shia says this." when he is speaking against americans, it says "nationalist cleric says this." [laughter] >> maybe taking it a little different direction. i am a medical doctor and also on the faculty of the harvard school of public health. there interested in psychological effects of war. i am interested in the effects on journalists. i do a lot of work with walter reed, military troops with significant injuries and incredible visible wounds of war. i am sure this is your sensitivity and your presence,
it has an important impact on your view. i am wondering if anyone is asking about the health of journalists, to be able to sustain yourself and do that work. aspect of dealing with conflict. >> we have seen a lot of horrific stuff over the last decade. i feel like my experience mirrors some of my friends that our soldiers -- are soldiers.. admit ys don't want to the their commander what they're going through because they will
not get picked for the next mission. word gets out that you are not know.g with it well, you i kept things down. i did not talk about it. nobody gets away for free. shit.al with a lot of i don't want to talk about it too much. >> they were telling that in recent years, the end of deployment outbriefs where people are given the opportunity to start to talk about some of that stuff. most don't have an infrastructure like that. it's not let's talk about what
we were dreading the fourth of july coming because of the fireworks. i hate it. the kids are going to want to see fireworks and i don't want to do it. there is a song out, and know your friends. that is how it feels. you can't get close to them because it is really hard. > a live look at the iwojima memorial next arlington national cemetery. the topic ong for tonight's c-span town hall as we talk about war coverage.
hashtag on twitter if you want to send tweets. inbers of congress are recess until september 9. reactions that we opposed to an hour ago or so. from jay.s is coveringe press obama's leno appearance. media does the coverage of the war is nonexistent. the only show what they want to see. have a couple of guests. in just a minute, will talk to a
national security correspondent for the washington times. she just got back from afghanistan and can update us on the situation there. if you have been watching c-span for a while, you might have seen some of the reporting from david to has been covering the conflict in afghanistan and iraq over the last 10 years or so. other stories include the continuing story of president with decision not to meet vladimir putin. the headline on fox this eve ning, the president won't be meeting. a reaction from russia posted ha, they are disappointed by the president's decision. he will be going to the g-20.
they were disappointed that president obama has canceled a bilateral summit with the russian president scheduled for september. he said obama still has a standing invitation. they said that the snub showed that the united states was not prepared for equal relations with russia. the white house announced the president would not travel to moscow. it was planned ahead of the meeting in russia. the continuing story on the areats of the united states, headline this evening in the washington post. they have for today terror plot, officials still on high alert. authorities say that they thwarted able to plot to disrupt
the country's economic lifeline by attacking strategic southern ports. it was not immediately clear if it was the attack alluded to intercepted by intelligence agencies last week. atwill hear from our guests the washington times. we did want to play the comments related to that story, president obama addressing the issue. the war inof afghanistan does not mean the end of threats to our nation. decimated when the leadership that attack us on 9/11, affiliate's and like- minded extremists still threaten our homeland, still threaten our diplomatic facilities and our businesses abroad. we have to take these threats
seriously and do all we can to confront the problem. this inbeen reminded of recent days. i want to take special time out to salute the brave diplomats and military personnel who have been working around the clock to safeguard his fellow americans serving overseas, including the marines standing guard around the world. they are doing an outstanding job. [applause] extremists, this is what those who would attack us don't get. is never goinges to retreat from the world. we don't get terrorized.
keep standing up to our interests. we'll keep standing up for human rights and for people wherever they lived. we will keep working with our allies and our partners to offer . future of hope and progress like generations before us, the united states of america is going to remain the greatest force for freedom that the world has ever known. you are an integral part of that. this is not just a job for our military. intelligence to stay true to our values as a nation.
the world is going through big changes. we have to have a military strategy to protect ourselves. it does mean keeping our military as the absolute best in the world. >> at this is a live look at the marine corps memorial, the iwo jima memorial outside washington. we will talk about the issue of how is covering the media. in may, she returned to a visit. having me on. >> you have been with the
washington times for a year-and- a-half and you have come back. and what was the biggest challenge there? biggest challenge was getting where i wanted to get to and covering the story as i wanted to cover. places and get to cover the afghan police and other types of things that i wanted to. that was probably the biggest challenge out there. about the president's ourarance today, he said war will be over in afghanistan. that goal?re we to
>> i spent a lot of time covering that when we were in afghanistan. untilwill be trainers 2017 if not until 2024. president talks about the war drawing down, we don't know what the presence will look like. mission ends in 2014 but there will likely be training much longer than that. i see how long it takes to train. a year ofe to undergo training, and you have to factor that in. of capabilities, who that is not going back and by 2014.
>> will talk about how the media covers wars. she writes for the washington times. our phone calls. i noticed in the last program, there was a couple of journalists, and they did not indicate too much that could be done to get the coverage improved a must we have a constituency demanding it. be thatut the veterans the constituency to really push the administration and the army and everyone to make war real for the american public. i am 68 years old and i want to know what we are doing. i am learning more every day
with what we're doing with the empire of bases. shouldn't that be the ones that help us out of this? >> when you talk about war coverage, who is your primary source? today is my best source. >> the tv network. >> who do i trust? they are one of my most reliable sources. >> any comments? >> i think it is interesting that she relies on coverage from russia today rather than american media. i am glad she is interested in war coverage. there is a little bit of fatigue from the american public. it used to be the top topic.
is topic three or four. when you have a little bit of a demand for news on the war in afghanistan. talked about the constituency, too. the does it look like for news report or the war reporting business? >> if there is a robust isdership and i think that great. lot of veteran response, and that is great. it would be nice if there was more of the demand of the than veteran communities, but they
are driving demand on war reporting. >> chloe and miami beach. >> i am old enough to have followed how our media has covered wars. when i was in college, we came the june to the fact that the fromas going very badly watching walter cronkite at the time. our government figured out it was not good have a lot of coverage. they kept the journalists in a cage. it is fascinating to see how things evolve. building up to afghanistan and the invasion of iraq, the excuse of 9/11.
that journalistic skepticism was over and it was now patriotism. i think the american media felon to that trap of you are with us or against us. the skepticism that should of been warning us, and the politicians of fell into that trap. they advocated, especially the media. i remember will floods are being so excited because the production values, it is like a movie. they loved it. there is no critical analysis of art history. that was absent. it was about spectacle, entertainment, and patriotism. i think it did us all a lot of harm.
i turn to foreign media because i think american media are about ratings and sensation. they don't really cover the world. >> any reaction to her use? >> i think newspapers and websites have a little less pressure to sensationalize things. there are other types of internet media outlets. censorship and that mentioned it, he was very difficult to cover the things i wanted to cover. know whatcoalition stories i wanted to cover weeks
in advance. for some reason, when i got to afghanistan, i was able to cover the stories because i told there was not enough time to a range it. -- arrange it. are reliant on the military for protection. there are times when i did not feel like i could get to the truth because of the security situation and having to rely on the military. the national security force ceremony, i was taken to class's. i felt like i was pretty heavily monitor the whole time. i am not sure if that factor i am sure it factors and
how much we can do, but is up to us to be able to report the truth. is echoed byration the panelists that we just showed, the photojournalist that talked about what he called the censorship of his attempts to cover issues in iraq. >> we probably lost 5000 americans over there. most have never seen a picture of a dead american soldier. even at arlington, when the families invited photographers to the cemetery to photograph generals, they were not allowed. he are not allowed to have a photographer to photograph the funeral.
a tribute ands as you wanted to have this memorialized, the pentagon said he could not photograph funerals. it. were smart about they were couched in this thing, an issue of privacy for the soldiers. weres smart because they positing themselves as defenders of the soldiers and put us in the position of people that wanted to disrespect the soldiers. that wasn't it at all. if you're going to enlist in the military and invade someone's country, that is not a private event. about mediassion coverage of war, this is not edwardet but a fan of
snowden. #cspanchat.is covers defense issues for the times. >> hello, i just listened to the program that was on a while ago, too. i will, in my opinion, take issue with your last two callers because i think there is too much news. the journalist from a person that was on a little bit ago said that we have never seen it that americans or something like that. so he took pictures of guys that were blown in half and all of this stuff. he wanted these to be shown and
they did not show them. he said because they were too graphic. that is part of the problem. with the men that were fighting the war have to look over their i don't know if it was iraqi. because he worked for the u.s. in journalism over there, he was threatened and wanted to leave and come to this country. he thought that he should get a visa immediately and it took him
three years for that to happen. them.u want to trust at least i want to trust them. guy came up with what he is going to do had he got himself worked into it. person. good he shot 13 people. >> the issue of trust that he brings up in terms of journalists in a war zone. cristina? >> i thought his comment was interesting. a point. journalists should not jeopardize security. that is something that i worried about what i was there. convoyoing to go on a
-- i had foursure tourniquets. i had a time line in case i needed to go with someone else. i think that is something we need to make sure we are not doing that is interfering with anything. it is extremely important, we have to be there to show the american people what they are doing. got down there, i was able to see what war life was like. it is difficult, it is dangerous. it is not luxurious at all. troops do down there for months at a time, it is less than one year or so.
i think it is important we are there to show the consequences and the sacrifice that the people have to make. it is not just troops coming back, they realize what they need when they come back. civilians understand the military overall is a huge capat of the population. christina wong, returning in may from afghanistan. she also covered military issues for abc news.com. democratic caller. definitely the coverage of the war that's going on. nobody speaks of the innocent people that have been murdered in iraq and afghanistan.
lastwhen the drone hit year. a dayds were killed at care center. nobody reported on that. of hitting that target, they hit the day care center. not one of those kids was over the age of 5. question there, he talked about drones. theirid you hear about use in afghanistan? >> i did see some. quite a few of them. --armed surveillance unarmed surveillance type of vehicles. it ties into what we mentioned earlier as far as the security
situation. no civilians because it was mostly on bases. with female afghan national security forces. but as far as the population, i could not get out there was mostly because it was difficult to leave the base. it was difficult for us , it was difficult for me to do that. civilians, iy think i was willing to take more risks. if i were willing to leave the ise by myself and go places,
could have done that. but it was difficult to address issues that civilians face. on twitterfollow her and greater reporting at the washington times website. we thank you for sharing your coverage experience with us this evening on the c-span town hall. >> thanks for having me on. phone, weare on the will get to you momentarily. the media coverage of war, this is one from the afterglow. the way that woodward and bernstein which from being aggressive reporters to being inside defenders of washington, we're using #cspanchat. becauseble to do this congress is in recess which, on many nights, there are resources
and speech is going into the evening. congress returns tuesday, wednesday, and thursday nights. we are keeping our eye on members as well and what they are up to. of tweets from members of congress. thanks to minneapolis medical center and pat kelly for an informative tour of their tele- icu. a nebraska republican looking forward to tomorrow's town hall meeting. it gives the time there for nebraska. center fromm the away, during the palace in honolulu. also a town hall and oklahoma. later when theu program schedule, we want to
show you some of the town hall where the issue was the health care laws in 2010. is gettingident around congress by executive orders and executive actions. why is that congress filing a lawsuit? the attorney general of the united states was recently held in contempt. we filed against him a contempt of court case. subpoenas and testimony. there is legal action under way. there are things congress can do in terms of not approving presidential appointees, withholding funding. we have done some of that were obama care is concerned. your point.
our child. even if you do not believe in your heart that it will pass or that is appropriate, you need represent us and we are tired of that. [applause] >> a great question. i do try to represent people here. obama care? defund absolutely. we have been able to pass legislation. 1040. not have to file a there was a program that was not sustainable. it would have bankrupted the government. able to get that thro
i think there are parts of this like the tax on medical vices. cain you imagine, we are going tank? your oxygen i think we should do it now. the question is do you want to shut down the government if you think that will achieve it? let me talk you about the consequences of what a complete government shutdown is. that means your troops in the field to not get paid. comments] course, i would not happen. i listen to your questions and i will let you have the microphone again if you want to. but let me finish answering and you are free to follow-up. that is true. we have four veterans centers in this district. we have workersreeing
for mode right now. that would be a complete job loss. fort sill, national weather center. because you shut down the government does not mean the other side has to give in, does not need the senate has to pass legislation. it to thes that, send senate, the senate will refund obamacare, send it back to us, and it would be up to us to shut down the government. i think politically that is extraordinarily dangerous to do. i do not think it will work. if it works, that is one thing. but i do not think it will. it will put millions of people out of work and damaged the economy and hurt a lot of innocent people. m back, so youat can have the chance to respond. >> it is a false argument from the standpoint -- the house could pass two precludesone that
obamacare. at some point obama care was passed against the will of the people. tolook to our supreme court step in. they failed us. we look to our congressmen, and to your credit, 40 times you have say get rid of it. insanity's definition is the same thing done again. chance, and itt is more than who is going to win the political power play if we shut down government. it is going to be what will the future of our country look like in a decade? once the tentacles are there, it is to late to then dial it back. look at social security. i think that is worth the risk, and >> i do not think it would come to that. >>i think it would come to that, -- if i can finish my point, and i do not think it would work.
look, we can do as you suggest. no problem passing the original bill without it. that is fine, but it is not going anywhere in the senate. it will have it attached it and it will come back. point i really think about the consequences of this kind of stuff in terms of people and youans'facilities, do too. but it is true. i agree that this was passed against the will of the people. there was never a poll that said it was popular. the people did not give us the presidency in the senate. he actually lost ground in the senate. the house is the last thing between a replay of 2009 and 2010, which is what we would see if we saw total democratic control of congress. either a enormous expansions of discretionary spending, those things would happen. i will take what you have to say literally very carefully and
consider it. i expect we will have a lot of discussions about it. i do not want to be disingenuous and tell you i think shutting down the government is a good idea, because i do not. i would be dishonest with you if i told you i thought it would work, and i am not the only guy that thinks that. i do not think tom coburn is a dangerous liberal who feels strongly about that. or guys like roy blunt who happened to have been around for the last shutdown. if wouldn't work, that is one thing, but it is high risk and it is very reckless with people whose jobs are on the line and whose security is as well, and i think it would be very damaging. i'm going to be a hard sell on that, that i will keep listening and we will see what the legislative options are in september. part of a town hall with oklahoma republican tom cole from yesterday.
we will show all of that to you later in our program schedule. town hall.pan's we are spending three nights a week talking politics and issues affecting the u.s. we will look tonight at media coverage of war in just a minute. we wanted top momentarily about the issue of the u.s. and russia. the president deciding today not to hold a unilateral meeting with russian leader vladimir putin. the upcoming early g-20 summit. car swanton, a susan caldwell. what is at stake for both russia and the united states with this decision? >> they were going to have a summit and discuss issues like and maybeol and syria some other things like missile
defense and human rights. but the white house today said that they did not think there had been enough progress on a lot of these issues to justify having a summit. the white house acknowledged that the edward snowden affair might have been a tipping point in all of this, and this is of course what the russians think, that the main reason -- and they said today in the kremlin -- that the main reason the white house is not doing this is because of the snowden case and russia's decision to give him temporary asylum. host: before that decision was made, they said a pre-summit summit on washington, the meetings of john kerry and agel andsecretary hg the rushing out, what were the results of that meeting? think obama would
decide to have a summit with putin after all right now. even if the talks or the cabinet level talks go well. these are talks between the foreign and defense ministers, and yes, they originally were set up and were expected to be part of preparation for the presidential summit. but the way that the administration explained everything today was they decided not to have a presidential summit, but a one of the bylaw continue. he realized russia is an important partner in a lot of things, and so they decided to the dialogue go-ahead on friday. i do not think there is going to be in a sudden reversal of the decision to have the summit. is our guest, and we are talking about u.s.-russia
relations. you are writing on a story today about the effects in yemen, the effects possible effects of the release of detainees from guantanamo. the headline, yemen turmoil could stall obama's efforts to close guantanamo. >> the president said in may that he was lifting the moratorium, the ban on repatriating detainees at guantanamo who were from yemen, and there is a whole bunch of them. as lot of them had been cleared for release for the u.s. government. the agencies have decided these people do not pose a threat and should be allowed to leave. this ban on repatriating yemenis was slapped on after the underpants bomber of christmas had some linksk
to yemen. it was felt we cannot be sending back tm and if it has such an active al qaeda branch. then in may obama said we think we can restart this process, we can look at these people again and see if we cannot send some of them home. none have been sent home since then, and there are 66 of them at guantanamo that have been cleared for release. they have not been sent home, and now with the worldwide security alert going on which seems to be based on things happening in yemen and the al qaeda branch there, which has ien very active lately, what wrote was it seems unlikely now that these yemeni detainees will be going home anytime soon. senator chambers said he did not think they should. others have doubts that they will. host: susan cornwell joining us
this evening talking about the decision of russia him and we mentioned her story on the potential release of guantanamo detainees back to yemen. thank you for being with us tonight. >> you are welcome. thank you. host: our coverage of the town hall continues. we are looking at media coverage and the war. the president in some of the video you just saw was in california today, speaking to marines at camp pendleton. we go back to our calls. thanks for waiting. tenet is in minneapolis. ask for being patient. go ahead. caller: hi. inistened to president obama the clip that you showed, and he the militarybout and how we stand for dignity and human rights. but when you were talking about media coverage, one of the
reasons why bradley manning is in prison is because he released that video of the american military shooting these innocent andle who were journalists some of them were medical people, and they were going to the aid of helping some other people, you know? the american military just killed all of them and they were killed in their car, and they that children were wounded. when he speaks about where the american military is and what they stand for and how they stand for human rights, that to me -- that is not human rights, you know? and because of bradley manning, we know about that video. imagine all the other atrocities that the american military has done to people in afghanistan and iraq. the woman from the washington times who was talking about her
coverage of the war, basically she was indebted with the military and that seems to me that it is something that the american media and that american media establishment have chosen to do together. host: later we will speak with a freelance video photographer who worked both as an imbed and an independent journalists. john is next in new jersey. good evening. caller: good evening. i would like to say the only time that we will wake up here is when we are attacked. i do not mean by a couple of bombers putting a couple of bombs on the street. i am talking about a serious attack. the things that have gone on in this country are seriously, seriously stupidity.
we are not facing reality here. al qaeda is real. al qaeda will come and get us the matter what we do. i agree with the caller before. i do not want to see any children dead. what about our own? host: tie that into what the in covering wars and things like these national security programs, surveillance programs. what is the media's responsibility? us a should be to give clear and precise definition of what is going on in these countries. they should be investigating what is going on about what is how are they succeeding and not succeeding. what are they doing? they should be showing us american people what they are doing. they are not in there to spy. we have the office buys in this the leaks.ow, and this country is folding in front of her eyes and nobody sees it? give me a break.
host: we have been fuzzy guessing on media coverage of wars, but a recent event we were covering with foreign journalists from syria, to talk about the obstacles they face in their coverage in that country. there,ugust when i went my second trip inside syria was in the city in the north of aleppo. it was a friday protest right after friday prayers. in freedom square. they renamed the square to freedom square. i would say it was about 2000 aople in this main square am mainly teenagers, children, and civilians. kalashnikovs any on civilians. the second day in syria, we are covering this protest.
a lot of chanting, a lot of ing the free syrian flag. all of a sudden everybody started to run and scatter, and then the people with us told us to run. and then we started seeing a plane going around in circles. and i heard that they shelled the protest, they shot on arms civilians. i never really expected an albatross plane to drop for bombs on a square filled with civilians. we started running and got into her car, and we got into a car and my colleagues was to christ to see the plane diving it would -- was surprised to see that plane diving, and the blast threw me on the ground a little bit. it threw me on the ground. all the glass shattered.
and then we kept running and that was my first big syria experience. it did to circles and dropped two bombs and then emptied a 50- caliber machine gun on the square of civilians. a very nice day in syria. that was clear to me that this is a very, very, different conflict than what i have covered so far. host: a recent event we covered in washington, war.ng at syria's civil our topic this evening, coverage of war by the media. here is a tweet from focus. they say media coverage of the war, same as fukushima coverage, not in the nation's interest. thea's job now is to keep public's attention diverted. this is jason. welcome. caller: hi.
i had an uncle who died in vietnam, and i think the soldiers are dying too young, and i hope we can have peace, not war. host: san rafael, california. robert. y coverages, mu comes from interviewing people. i've been crisscrossing the country talking to veterans. if you want to hear about war, you need to talk about veterans, it is one of the most neglected groups of americans within our society. i think in addition to getting coverage, we need to look at the women with children who are veterans on the street homeless with children in one of the wealthiest countries on the face of the earth. war is not a game. i think that will help us to understand what we are up against is to become educated, to learn how the world really works instead of how we would
like for it to be. host: robert, you mentioned you were going across the country talking to veterans. is this some sort of oral history project? no.caller: the good lord has me doing this. i am doing this on my own, and i am not a wealthy person. but i am a teacher and i saw how veterans were being treated in this country and they have been treating badly after each and every war. if we go back and make the american people in front of us, we go back to hitler, their soldiers occupied synagogues and churches, we do not understand war, and most of all, people pyle who lost his life in the war, those people travel with the troops and reported what they saw. we talk about that, but in today's world, you are writing
people at have no clue what they're talking about. war is not organized. it is a tragedy. if we take care of the veterans and their families and their children's of efforts who are returning, we can learn a lot about war, and i challenge any politician to say that start the draft. if you start the draft, we will not get involved in the civil war's. host: robert mentioned ernie pyle. recently we did a program on oral history. this is the 60th anniversary of the armistice in korea. in a couple of weeks, we will cover a program on saturday the 18th, lots of details on that on our website. www.c-span.org \history.
hello, i republican line. caller: i am a veteran also. and my big complaint about the journalists, they always alwaysd stuff which reflected had that we did, but we did not focus on anything the enemy did. we did not hear about that on the news. other vietnam veteran, i think that is coming back and getting a bad rap. i don't really like it. there is a lot of things we could do as far as taking care the soldiers coming home. look at the soldiers who are down there in fort ending. that was war. byse people were being done muslim extremists. those are my questions. host: you're looking at a live
picture from across the river in washington at the iwo jima memorial, the marine corps -- memorial. if the monument looks funny, they have put up scaffolding around the monument for the next few years that was because the monument is damage to an earthquake happened in the washington earthquake in southern virginia. it affected washington and caused upwards of $12 million of damage estimated to the washington monument. back to andy in georgia. he is on our independent line. caller: i want to make a comment. i am a two-tour veteran of iraq. many on the perception of needy if being a trusted. we hadexperience is that media embedded with us for quite a while when we went to baghdad in 2003.
he had an incident occur, i will not go into specifics because i do not like to talk about it, but the media that was with us, to reporters from the ap did not report the facts as they were on the ground. they spun the story to fit an agenda. it caused a lot of distrust. you know, that really affected my perception of the media. i do not think they are putting out the true story come and the american people are not going to listen to outlets that constantly preach a message that is spun a certain way. host: after the incident you mention in 2003, did you get an opportunity to speak to those confront their editor and say this is what you happen and we feel you did not report it correctly? knowr: yes, we did not that the story was reported in a negative way until the story came out several weeks later. it caused problems with the locals, in our neighborhood,
where the incident occurred. iraq. in caller: yes, correct, and it put our soldiers at risk. it was a negative thing. they did not put a story at correctly, and the reporter earlier was talking about how she felt controlled by the military. basically she was getting pillow talk or talking points, and that is because the military does not trust the media to some extent. that is kind of where that is coming from. host: when you were in iraq am a aside from these reports, were there reporters that you and your mates trusted? caller: i would say differently after that incident, no. we werely not, because essentially on a gag order. we had reporters who would try bed with us on missions.
the story was very controlled by our public affairs officers, from our battalion. typically, a line soldier is not going to be allowed to be interviewed by a reporter just because they want to control the message. the army does. extent am a that is a good thing. in other situations, like the one i described earlier am a it was not because it inside the people when the truth was not being told. host: are you still in the military? caller: i do not want to comment on that. host: we appreciate you telling your setory this evening on c- span. democrats line. caller: good evening. the man from california, robert, the teacher doing the bus tour? he hit it right on thei am in a surroundedhere i am
by old men, vietnam vets, and i am 38 years old, a young man, but i go over there, we talk and everybody is the cutting their grass, having a bear, and they show me pictures. some of the things that they talk about they do not want to talk about. beautifules are so that they are ugly, but that is war. that is the nature of the devil's playground. you are to get this. host: these are pictures taken by the veterans in theater? caller: yes, they let them take to cheers, and some of them -- they censored some of them, but the pictures that they have, they showed them to me. and war is war. it is ugly. the truth is they are in the picture. it is the eyes that you have to see when they are taking the pictures.
it is a powerful thing, and when you're looking at these men, you're saying you to yourself, wow, you were actually doing this. everybody is talking about the one guy saying america is crumbling. america is going through its thing. it goes through things like that 1960's and on and on and on. it goes on. we are in a generation where everybody has technology, everybody has a smart phone. controlmedia has to what they give to the people in the masses because some people will go crazy. columbus, ohio, thanks. four of your calls up here as we do a cease-fire -- c-span townhall tonight, focusing on media coverage of war. here --weak heret
we will have more coming up in a moment. we wanted to breeding you the comments of richard ankle as he spoke at this year's dedication of the memorial for fallen journalists at the newseum at washington. lastwas held hostage december, and i thought i was going to be added to this list. i was lucky after five unpleasant days. i got out. there was a gun battle and a rescue and i managed to escape. i was rescued and escaped. i returned to syria last week for the first time since being kidnapped, and instead of having list, iadded to this have the honor of paying respect to my colleagues who did not make it, and i would like to thank the newseum for that privilege. the question is, why do we do it? why takehe